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7 Best Lunch Spots in Midtown NYC

By Emmie MurphyApr 12 2024
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New York City is home to tens of thousands of restaurants. Often dubbed the food capital of the world, the five boroughs are a tangle of both Michelin-starred eateries and dollar slice joints. If you crave it, chances are you’ll find it here: baguettes that rival Paris, mouth-watering Korean barbecue, and a sandwich from the corner bodega that always hits just right.

At the heart of it all lies Rockefeller Center. With more than 40 eating and drinking destinations spread throughout our Midtown campus – from ice cream and cookie shops to breweries and critically acclaimed establishments – there is no better place to beat the mid-day slump. Whether you’re looking for a quick bite before a show, in need of a trusty go-to, or entertaining a client, we’ve got you covered. Read on for seven of the best spots for lunch in NYC.

Explore all of Rockefeller Center’s dining options here.

For Grab and Go: 5 Acres

5 Acres serves up Midwestern charm in the center of the city. The brainchild of Greg Baxtrom, the chef behind Olmsted and Patti Ann’s, 5 Acres focuses on creative, seasonal American fare: think towering cheddar burgers, slow-cooked baby back ribs, and spinach artichoke dip. Diners will soak up a feeling of warmth and authenticity, with details from the menu to the decor inspired by Baxtrom’s family farm in Illinois.

And for those on the run, 5 Acres also offers a to-go kiosk, perfect for a quick but delicious bite. Keep an eye out for seating areas scattered throughout the Rink Level for an easier way to enjoy your takeout.

For a Working Lunch: Jupiter

It’s not every day that a critically acclaimed restaurant can come to you – and your office. Jupiter, located at the Rink Level, is known for its unique spin on handmade pasta and Italian wines. Now with their Working Lunch offering, Jupiter is bringing the freshest eats to the boardroom. Upgrade your team lunch, client meeting, or office party with paninis, antipasti, and, of course, a sweet dolce treat.

In a rush? Try their Porchetta Truck on the Plaza for delicious porchetta sandwiches served up on homemade ciabatta.

For a World-Class Sandwich: Alidoro

Since first opening in SoHo in 1986, Alidoro has earned the moniker of New York’s no. 1 sandwich shop by dishing out the best menu selections made with the freshest ingredients. With over 40 options to choose from, Alidoro can satisfy the meat lovers and vegetarians, the food snobs, and even the native Italians. Get it hot or cold, on homemade Focaccia or Semolina. Whatever you choose, it’s a lunch you won’t soon forget.

For a Fast Casual Meal: Puya

After moving from New York to Italy, Francesco Realmuto found himself on an unexpected journey: the discovery of Mexican cuisine. This spurred far-flung travels throughout Mexico and a deep love of the country’s culture and traditions. Eventually, Realmuto was inspired to bring a slice back to New York.

Puya: Tacos de Puebla is named for the Puya hot pepper – widely used in Mexico but harder to find elsewhere – that is known for its strong aroma and fruity taste. The menu is a spin on Puebla cuisine (the native city of chef Romulo Barrientos) and gestures to the Puebla lifestyle, where lunch is not just a mid-day refuel, but a chance to pause and share real food together. So, while you may be taking your short rib tacos or vegetarian quesadilla on the go, be sure to savor each bite – made fresh for you every day.

For the Whole Family: The Tipsy Baker

Ever wonder where those Michelin-starred restaurants get their bread? The warm, buttery kind you could fill up on before you’ve even seen a menu? Chances are the credit goes to the artisanal bakery Pain D’Avignon. Lucky for us, we can all enjoy their freshly baked fare without a Michelin price tag at the newest offshoot: The Tipsy Baker. A bakery-by-day and bar-by-night, The Tipsy Baker is a great place to bring the whole family for a mid-day meal. Expect simple, delicious quiches and tartines for any taste – from the kid-friendly grilled cheddar cheese to the elevated tuna niçoise. And be sure to round out the meal with a sweet goodie — croissants, cookies, cake, and more.

Coming Soon to Rockefeller Center

For the Lobster Lover: Luke’s Lobster

Luke’s Lobster is a popular joint throughout NYC, and the newest outpost, opening in late spring 2024, is at Rockefeller Center. Founded by third-generation Maine lobsterman Luke Holden, the restaurant brings the famous Maine lobster roll to the city. With a focus on sustainability, Luke’s sources directly from trusted fishermen and launched its own purchasing and production business to ensure quality at every step of the way.

Though lobster rolls are a staple, the menu covers all the seafood classics, from shrimp rolls and lobster bisque to their award-winning New England clam chowder. And don’t be afraid to kick the flavor up another notch with their spicy honey or truffle butters. 

For Spicing Things Up: INDAY

Beat the boring desk salad or sad PB&J sandwich with a trip to INDAY. Founded by NYC native Basu Ratnam, INDAY is inspired by the Kolkata heritage of his mother and the Hyderabadi origins of his father. INDAY’s menu bridges the traditions and rituals of Indian culture with the pace and values of today — merging classic recipes with sustainable sourcing and an express kitchen. Sink your teeth into curries, rotis, salads, and bowls that will spice up your lunchtime routine and nourish both body and mind. INDAY is scheduled to open at Rockefeller Center in spring 2024.

View all of Rockefeller Center’s restaurants, cafés, and bars here.

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